What are GMOs?

A GMO, is a genetically modified organism, meaning that its characteristics have been changed through modification of its DNA. This can be any plant, animal, microorganism or other organism whose genetic makeup has been modified in a laboratory using genetic engineering or transgenic technology. GMOs create combinations of plant, animal, bacterial and virus genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.

What does the science say?

There is no scientific consensus on the safety of eating GMOs. In fact, there are conflicting opinions, research and studies on the topic. In 2015, 300 scientists, physicians and scholars released a statement concluding that the lack of and contradictory nature of the scientific evidence published to date prevents conclusive claims that GMOs are safe or unsafe. Additionally, these scientists noted that in order to strive for public interest, rigorous, scientific assessment of GMO safety needs to happen outside of proprietary interests.

An earlier literature review of studies assessing GMO safety came to a similar contradictory finding.  While there were just as many studies claiming that GMOs are safe for consumption as not, the ones that found GMOs safe were, for the majority, funded by biotechnology companies responsible for bringing those GMOs to market.

What does this mean for me? 

While the scientific evidence does not decisively conclude that GMOs are unsafe, they are not naturally occurring (by definition) and there is evidence for their harm both in consumption and for the environment. The truth is that many of the GMOs that are available today are regulated by the companies that have developed them and the governmental frameworks for regulation are weak. Until there is open, credible knowledge about the long-term effects of each individual GMO that has been created, there can be no blanket statement made on GMOs' impact on health, the environment and society. It looks like this will not be happening any time soon, so we have made the decision to use no genetically modified organisms.  

At Living Juice, we don't use any genetically modified organisms. We want to serve fresh, nutritious and natural cold-pressed juices. We want to guarantee that we are delivering nutrition-packed, delicious and healthy fruit and vegetables juices. That is why we have chosen to only press organic, non-GMO fruits and vegetables into our juices.

References

1. Hilbeck, A., Binimelis, R., Defarge, N., Steinbrecher, R., Székács, A., Wickson, F., . . . Wynne, B. (2015). No scientific consensus on GMO safety. Environmental Sciences Europe, 27(1). doi:10.1186/s12302-014-0034-1

2. Domingo, J. L., & Bordonaba, J. G. (2011). A literature review on the safety assessment of genetically modified plants. Environment International, 37(4), 734-742. doi:10.1016/j.envint.2011.01.003

3. Antoniou, M., Robinson, C., & Fagan, J. (2012). GMO myths and truths: an evidence-based examination of the claims made for the safety and efficacy of genetically modified crops. Kolkata: Earthcare Books.